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FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 12th, 2011 at 5:33:03 AM permalink
Quote: odiousgambit

What came before the big bang? Is your statement Church doctrine? Just curious.

I used to think of the Universe as quite old, but the more we know about it, the age of it seems young compared to what came out of this single spot.




The first cause of all that exists, who has existence in itself not dependent on anything, the creator, aka God is the beginning of the Big Bang. Because matter, energy, space, and time were all created at that event it is not technically a question of 'before', there is no before the Big Bang there is just God. God has always existed, there was no beginning for the one who began everything. As hard as it is to wrap our minds around this we remember that it is the logical conclusion of knowing that things really do exist and for them to exist they need to be caused. To avoid the impossibility of an infinite regress of causality we have to allow for a first cause, that began everything - this is what I call God and others might call something else.

While this is Church teaching it is not the fruit of theological reflection and revelation. The human mind using reason can come to this realization on its own. That is why Nareed's maddening and repeatitive requests for proof are so silly. The proof is logic and reason that is available to most human beings. What makes it all so much more interesting is that modern cosmology continues to offer more and more evidence to the support creation ex nihilo.
Nareed
Nareed
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November 12th, 2011 at 5:41:56 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

While this is Church teaching it is not the fruit of theological reflection and revelation. The human mind using reason can come to this realization on its own.



No, it can't. You start with the assumption that there is a particular god, and go on to assume he created everything, then use the assumption as proof. That's what's silly.

Quote:

That is why Nareed's maddening and repeatitive requests for proof are so silly.



There are a number of creation myths. What proof have you that yours is the true one?
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odiousgambit
odiousgambit
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November 12th, 2011 at 6:05:56 AM permalink
I have no problem with Nareed demanding proof, except that Fr. Gamble is not saying providing scientific proof is what he is doing.

The universe, the known universe that is, is so monumentally big that I now have trouble thinking of it as being just a few billion years old and want to know what science theorizes existed before the Big Bang. I wouldnt be the first to wonder if a former universe contracted to a small point that exploded in what is this Big Bang, a repeated process that perhaps has no beginning and happens again, contractions and big bangs repeating endlessly. Since the observed continued and accelerating expansion of the universe [which astronomy did not predict] is not understood and requires a new theory about dark energy, who knows what to expect? I have heard theories that the acceleration will cease and the process eventually reverse into contraction. Again, it is not understood well.

Why ponder this in the religious thread? IMHO there is no question that if these facts were known in say the 17th century what is now theorized as dark energy and dark matter, would be posited as activities explainable by actions of God. I personally probably tend to 'go there' and call in God, which in science is cautioned against since these things may later be better explained by science. But I'm just saying.
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FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 12th, 2011 at 6:10:38 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

You start with the assumption that there is a particular god, and go on to assume he created everything, then use the assumption as proof.



No, I start with a neccesary first cause of all existence (I call this God, which I think is your hang up, but we could call this neccesary being who is not dependent on anything else for its exisentence many things). This first cause is not an assumption because it is true that everything that exists needs to have a cause. It is also true and not an assumption that an infinite regress of causality is just well...silly. Therefore there has to be a terminal beginning of all things and this has to come ex nihilo and by a cause that is complete in itself.
FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 12th, 2011 at 6:34:34 AM permalink
I think there are some parts of what OG brings up that would do better in another thread, but no matter how often the known universe expands and contracts, it had to have a beginning and that is what belongs here. Science can rightfully claim that it doesn't know enough about the Big Bang and other stuff and that it will only grow in its knowledge of these things. However, it is not a guess or saying something we do not already know through reason that matter, energy, space, and time - they all had to be created at some point. What science has to grapple with is that they cannot go past this beginning. They can point at it and get closer to it in their many theories about the Big Bang using evidence gathered in the observable world and universe around us. However this question about the ultimate beginning is not one that can be tested for because there is nothing before this beginning only God.


This is taken from an essay by Paul Copan and William Craig entitled, "Creatio Ex Nihilo"
Sir Arthur Eddington, contemplating the beginning of the universe, opined that the expansion of the universe was so preposterous and incredible that "I feel almost an indignation that anyone should believe in it—except myself." He finally felt forced to conclude, "The beginning seems to present insuperable difficulties unless we agree to look on it as frankly supernatural."
boymimbo
boymimbo
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November 12th, 2011 at 6:53:26 AM permalink
The concept of time is fleeting at best. We live our lives in "Newtonian" time. It is here where we learn that distance = velocity x time. The change in velocity is acceleration.

However, When you compress so much matter and energy into a small space the concept of time is quite different than what we experience. We get into Einsteinian time where time and space are all related. But even this general relativity may not hold at the compression of space (and time) at the big bang.

Whatever view of the singularity that began our universe that you believe in, at this point, is as valid as any other view, as none have been proven. This includes the explanation of "God did it". I personally subscribe to Hawking's view that the point is moot, as information from before the big bang cannot be transmitted into our universe. Therefore, any theory that attempts to explain what happens before the big bang would be unprovable.

It is our human experience that says that time must flow from past to future. When you get into the physics of the big bang, the definition of time that we all cling to disappears. When I make this post, there will be a time stamp that essentially puts my (x,y,z,t) coordinate into the ether. When you get into the compression of space that is the big bang, the coordinates of space probably go away as do most of the laws of physics that most of us are unfamiliar with.

My point to all of this is that we ask the question "what happened before the big bang?". My answer is that the concept of time that we're familiar with didn't happen until well after the big bang occurred, and even that statement itself is erroneous.

It's alot easier to point our finger at "God" and say it was "It", but that don't make it so. Imagine if Galileo just didn't bother to point his telescope at Jupiter or was brainwashed to absolutely believe that the Sun was the center of everything. Where would we be now?
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Nareed
Nareed
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November 12th, 2011 at 9:26:35 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

No, I start with a neccesary first cause of all existence (I call this God, which I think is your hang up, but we could call this neccesary being who is not dependent on anything else for its exisentence many things).



But you're still making the unwarranted assumption (i.e. an assumtpion unsupported by evidence) that a being has to be the first casue. In other words, you argue there is a god because there is a god.

Quote:

This first cause is not an assumption because it is true that everything that exists needs to have a cause.



Ah, but you say god requires no casue because he is eternal and thus ahs no beginning and no ending. Well, we knoe the universe cannot end, therefore we may assume it never began. Thus the first cause is the eternal universe.

So there :P
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FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 12th, 2011 at 11:04:28 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

But you're still making the unwarranted assumption (i.e. an assumtpion unsupported by evidence) that a being has to be the first casue. In other words, you argue there is a god because there is a god.



Your unfortunate aversion to the even the word 'God' is not allowing you to see that the concept of the first cause is not neccesarily a personal God, such as Christians bellieve for example. If you eliminate this assumption from your thinking I am confident that you will see that it is very reasonable to believe that there is something that is a first cause.


Quote: Nareed

Ah, but you say god requires no casue because he is eternal and thus ahs no beginning and no ending. Well, we knoe the universe cannot end, therefore we may assume it never began. Thus the first cause is the eternal universe.



After accusing me of assuming I find it strange you so willingly and recklessly assume (see your definition above) that the universe can have both no end and no beginning?!? I am begining to hope these posts of yours have an end, however knowing you and your persistence I am sure they will continue. I guess it was my fault as I am the first cause of this thread.

This reminds me of a joke:
Have you all ever seen the Simpsons where Homer creates that famous song about Ned Flanders. It gets so popular that he hears it everywhere and begins to hate it. Finally Homer exclaims, "I hate my own creation...now I know what God must feel like."

On a similar note I heard that God made teenagers so that parents could know how it felt to have your creation, who you love, not even acknowledge your existence and want nothing to do with you.
Nareed
Nareed
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November 12th, 2011 at 11:11:33 AM permalink
Quote: FrGamble

Your unfortunate aversion to the even the word 'God' is not allowing you to see that the concept of the first cause is not neccesarily a personal God, such as Christians bellieve for example.



I don't care what you want to call the first cause, there' no reason to assume it has to be a sentient being.

Quote:

After accusing me of assuming I find it strange you so willingly and recklessly assume (see your definition above) that the universe can have both no end and no beginning?!?



If a first cause is eternal, and we know the universe cannot end, then it's reasonable to suppose it didn't begin, either. It's your hangup on there being a god who created the universe that prevents you from even conceiving such a thing.
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FrGamble
FrGamble
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November 12th, 2011 at 12:16:55 PM permalink
It is logic that drives me to a belief in God as the first cause. I agree the first cause does not need be a sentient being, but there are very serious problems with holding that position, more on that later.

By the way where is your proof that the universe cannot end?

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